grandchild grandparents obsessive grandmother

OGS: Obsessive Grandmother Syndrome

Hey Y’all:

I am extremely blessed and I know it. My mother is the best Nana in the world; as you know she fully potty trained all three of my children, took care of them during the summer and is connected to them like I could never imagine. My mother in law loves her grandchildren with all her heart and will do anything within her power for them. Their great-grandmother loves to see them come and rejoices when they go (they are too busy for her) but thankfully all three of these wonderful women know their boundaries. They know that they are the grandparents and not the parents. They discipline when we are not around and fall back when we are.

So why the headline?
I have a wonderful friend who is currently experiencing OGS with her mother in law. Her daughter is a beautiful, smart and active toddler who has a full life. She participates in swim class, gymboree and is in preschool. My friend is also a co-worker who’s mother lives out of state. Now the obsessed grandmother lives in- state and picks said toddler up from school everyday and has her own quality time with her grand baby (who is the first girl grandchild of the family). When ever my friends mother comes in town, she wants to spend as much time as possible with her grand daughter. Which to anybody else makes perfect sense but to the grandma with OGS it’s a struggle. She doesn’t seem to understand that she has to share and allow the out of town grandma to spend quality time and establish a lasting relationship with her grandchild.

My friend is often very frustrated by her mother in law aloofness regarding her Mom’s desire to spend time with her granddaughter i.e. picking her up from school, spending Saturday afternoon’s with her on the beach etc. My friend’s mother in law has even cried; yes y’all I said CRIED because her son (my friends hubby) has told his mother that she needs to fall back and accept their decisions where their daughter is concerned; especially the fact that they don’t want her to spend the night out.

I share this with you because I’m sure my friend isn’t the only mother dealing with this syndrome. Most mother in laws are not the easiest to get along with and grandparents do tend to have issues with boundaries but it is my opinion that parents be firm with their wishes for their children. If you don’t want your child to partake in certain foods then your parents/in laws should respect that, if you would rather your child not watch television before bed but read a book then the grandparents should buy a book a day when they stop in their local Walmart.

Grandparents should see themselves as a asset to their children not a pain in the butt . So if you are reading this and you are a grandparent remember your role is. You have already raised your child/children; so it’s your job to enjoy your grandchildren and send them home when your quality time has come to and end. Don’t be overbearing and certainly don’t alienate yourself from your grandchildren. Living to see your offspring is truly a blessing so cherish your time with them but remember to share.

Are you suffering from or dealing with OGS? If so let me know your major challenges in the comments section.

Until next time…


2 replies on “OGS: Obsessive Grandmother Syndrome”

My family as well as my in-laws live 2 hrs away. When my mother-in-law comes to visit she forces herself on my 17 month old & doesn't give my 11 yr old (not her biological grandchild) hardly any attention. She is overbearing and suffocating. I watched my husband most recently shove my toddler off onto her as he was kicking and screaming clearly resisting her. My husband thanks she's a godsend, a true saint and has made it clear she can do as she pleases with him and demands I let her do his cares when she's around. He doesn't think she does anything wrong ever. I'm at my wits end with it and feel I should be in counselling for it. Please offer some advice 😦


Your husband is wrong, plain and simple. He should respect you…your wishes and your feelings. In my opinion, a grandparent is not someone who is another parent. A grandparent is invited to interact with the children by the parents. It is not a “right” and bad behaviors and rudeness should not be tolerated. Your husband's first priority should be to you and not his parents.


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